Invasion of Solidago canadensis is causing biotic homogenization in China

Guo Qi CHEN1, Chao Bin ZHANG1, Ling MA1, Sheng QIANG1, John A. SILANDER2 & Li Li QI3
1 Weed Research Laboratory, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, China
2 University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, USA
3 Northern Crop Science Laboratory, USDA-ARS, North Dakota, USA

Serious invasive species may directly and quickly cause biotic homogenization. Here we quantitatively compared the communities invaded by Solidago canadensis (SC) with the control sites adjacent to these populations but without it in China and those with SC native populations in America through field-surveys. We found that SC invasions cause invaded habitats to share similar plant communities with those in native ranges which are characterized by SC being dominant, significantly lower species richness and alfa- and beta- diversity, as well as a decrease in correlations between geographic distance and floristic similarities. Analyses on Bray-Curtis similarity (based on species abundance) suggests the sites with SC invasive populations clustered together with those with native SC populations but not with adjacent control sites. While the Jaccard similarity (based on species list) suggest there is no common co-prosperous plant invader in the communities with SC invasive populations. Although SC favors fertile loam soil conditions, it homogenizes various habitats with large populations.

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